The best part of working at HIGH TIMES is meeting all the interesting people that gravitate towards the magazine. Sometimes we even get lucky and convince some of them to write for us. Most editors have a few regular freelance writers they can rely on to consistently come up with brilliant ideas and turn them into fascinating and insightful stories.
I would like to take issue with Gregory Porter for some remarks made in the June ’92 NORMLizer column. In regard to his contention that there is a certain amount of hypocrisy at work in the hemp movement, and that virtually everyone who has joined has done so because they smoke marijuana, nothing could be further from the truth.
Could the CIA be responsible for the majority of the heroin that’s plaguing our streets? Alfred McCoy thinks so. As the author of The Politics of Heroin; CIA Complicity in the Global Drug Trade (Lawrence Hill Books, Brooklyn, NY), McCoy faced death threats, income tax audits, phone taps and other forms of harassment while writing the first edition of this book titled The Politics of Heroin in Southeast Asia in 1972.
NORIEGA CONVIECTED —BUT COKE STILL FLOWS THROUGH PANAMA
Web of Intrigue
Bush Connection Squelched
Meanwhile, back in Panama...
The BCCI Octopus
SEPT.'92 NO.205 General Manuel Noriega’s April conviction on eight counts of cocaine trafficking, racketeering and money laundering is being hailed as a major victory in the War on Drugs. But three years after the general was deposed by the US invasion, more coke than ever is flowing out of Panama to US markets—and the Noriega trial has raised disturbing questions about the real role of US enforcement and intelligence agencies in Latin America’s increasingly chaotic Drug Wars.
After witnessing a steady stream of drug law violators pass through Santa Ana’s courtrooms over the years—as they had during his criminal court tenure—county Judge James Gray finally reached an ideological break-point. Last April, Gray, who now serves on the civil court bench, publicly declared the “War on Drugs” a failure and held a press conference to announce his advocacy of an alternate solution—the legalization of marijuana, cocaine and heroin.
On May 7, police from New York’s Suffolk County approached a New York City drug location the same way they would approach any crackhouse—with a search warrant in hand. Only this drug location was the 94th Precinct of the New York Police Department in the Greenpoint section of Brooklyn.
State Department Study: Opium Trade Booms According to the latest annual State Department report on global anti-drug efforts, international opium production increased by eight percent last year, outpacing US attempts to eradicate global poppy crops.
Each February a new National Drug Control Strategy issues from the White House. The latest one is mostly concerned with what President George Bush wants Congress to pay for in 1992, namely: “effective law enforcement, drug prevention programs for our schools and communities, more and increasingly effective drug treatment, coordinated border interdiction and a greater role for international diplomacy.”
By now most of America knows about the death of Barbra Jenks, who was lost to AIDS, and her valiant fight to make medical marijuana available for all who need it. ERTH, MDHEMP, TEACH, and Ohio NORML are presently working on a hemp quilt project as a memorial to Barbra Jenks and the presentation of a hemp name panel on the Mall in Washington, DC to the AIDS NAMES Project in October.
Panama City, Panama —June 11,1992 President George Bush, in Panama for the first time since his 1989 invasion which toppled the Noriega regime, found himself on the receiving end of tear gas just as he was about to deliver a speech intended to bolster his faltering foreign policy image.
During a trip to a New York City hospital this past spring, Vice President Dan Quayle asked administrators whether or not AIDS patients were “taking DDT.” The VP turned purple when DDT is a pesticide.... The AIDS drug in question is AZT. A local chapter of NORML has rented out space in a firehouse in Butler, NJ for meetings, much to the displeasure of certain local community leaders.
The slow-moving bureaucracies of two major urban areas ravaged by AIDS are finally starting to face the reality that moral-1 istic preaching doesn't save lives. Financially-strapped New York City has just received two grants totalling $140,000 from the American Foundation for AIDS Research for city-run needle exchange programs.
During an April hemp rally in California’s conservative Orange County, activist-organizer and Freedom Fighter David Myers was approached by five sheriff’s officers. They announced to him and others that all of the rally signs had to be hand-held and that it was illegal to attach or post them anywhere in the park.
Steve Chandler, a man who built himself a castle, hopes he doesn’t soon find himself in the dungeon. Chandler, an outspoken hemp activist and medical marijuana user from Homer, Alaska, has spent the last ten years building a mock-Tudor castle out of polyurethane foam.
The Fourth Annual Weedstock Festival, a weekend-long benefit concert for the Wisconsin, Iowa and Minnesota NORML chapters and the Illinois Marijuana Initiative, was by all accounts a blast— despite an unprecedented police presence. The three-day festival, held in the Wisconsin countryside at New Lisbon, an hour north of Madison, started on May 22 and was attended by an estimated 6,000 partyers and activists.
We each perceive reality through our own peculiar filters. For example, my wife Nancy is a video artist and I'm a comedian. So, when the cops who assaulted Rodney King were found not guilty and the rebellion exploded in Los Angeles, we both reverted to the tools of our respective trades in order to deal with the truth.
You know that the United States Constitution prohibits unreasonable searches and seizures. If you consent to a search, however, a court will never suppress the evidence found. This means that whenever you consent to a search of your backpack or your car or your home you are basically giving up your rights.
The Drug War stumbles on, obliterating one constitutional guarantee after another. Case in point: the Great LSD Carrier Medium Issue. The Enhanced Sentencing Guidelines set forth in the 1986 AntiDrug Abuse Act sought to treat equally culpable individuals similarly by using a “market-oriented, weight-based” approach to sentencing convicted drug dealers.
Not too long ago, current technology such as electro-meditation devices and virtual reality would have been laughed at as pipe dreams. These days virtualreality-based video games and rides can be found littering malls, movie theaters and nightclubs all across the country.
On Curing Stupidity ...And the FDA’s War on Smart Drugs
Just as athletes use specific nutrients and steroids to improve their physical performance, brain gourmets have anxiously awaited the day when neuroscientists would find the right chemical keys to boost their mental energy. That day has come.
What will European Unification mean for Drug Policy?
here are two unanswered questions about what drug policy will look like in the new Fortress Europe after the borders open and economic unification kicks in on January 1, 1993. The first is whether the 12 European Community [EC] nations will adopt a single, uniform drug policy.
Don’t let the price of pot bum you out.... Fight back! For less than the going price of an ounce of decent connoisseur herb, you can build your own portable skunk factory following our Poor Starving Graduate Student’s design. It’s neat and discreet and capable of producing six ounces in less than four months.
This is a plant in my garden. Just a few garden flowers. Paul Negril, Jamaica When watering my plants, I always end up with about 20% overflow. I use a very rich soil, and the overflow is real yellow and smelly. What does this mean? Would it be bad to water my other house plants with this?
The lyrics quoted throughout this story are from Bob Dylan’s 1978 Street-Legal (Columbia Records) album which he dedicated to the memory of Emmett Grogan.Of the many faces of Emmett Grogan, the one he would have us remember him by is the streetwise do-gooder with a hardened fist and a poet’s soul.
Despite the cut-off of the compassionate Investigative New Drug program by the Bush administration, a new approach to making marijuana available to patients who need it is emerging. In the state of Maine, the legislature has passed a bill which declares that it is not a crime for a patient to possess or cultivate marijuana for medical use if a doctor certifies that he or she has a legitimate medical need.
NATIONAL NORML CONFERENCE IN SAN FRAN SET FOR SEPT. 4-6
Come to San Francisco for the 1992 National NORML conference! This year’s conference promises to be one of the best ever! More than any other single event, the annual NORML conference brings together people from all parts of the nation and from every major organization working for the repeal of marijuana prohibition.
I’m a student at the University of Louisville who enjoys herbalizing as much as economically possible. Here in Louisville, we're not expecting the usual summer dry spell to be so bad. One can get a 1/4 'z of decent bud for $60, but it's kinda dry and seedy.
In 1975, two FBI agents and an Indian activist were killed during an ail-night gun battle on the Pine Ridge (SD) Sioux Reservation. More than a year later AIM activist Leonard Peltier was convicted of the execution-style murders of the two agents.
For some strange reason, I used to think Jerry Garcia was a Jewish guy from New York who landed in San Francisco in the ’60s, changed his last name and started the Grateful Dead. Maybe it was the beard that had me all confused. Years later, during my second stint as a Deadhead (meaning now), I realized how wrong I was about Jerry.
These rockers are turning or have already turned 50 this year: Paul McCartney, Roger McGuinn, Graham Nash, Paul Kantner, Mick Fleetwood, Garth Hudson, Country Joe McDonald, Spencer Davis, Art Garfunkel, Isaac Hayes, Curtis Mayfield, Michael Nesmith, Gary Puckett and Johnny Rivers.
Every few months or so we’re going to send our new columnist-at-large, Herbert Huncke, on an adventure. This month we sent him to Soho where he got plugged into a Synchro-Energizer. This is his report....
A Synchro-Energizer—it sounds important. Synchronizing light and sound to achieve a desired effect. I'd heard about this and I was anxious to try it out. I think I know what they're aiming for. The sales pitch—using terms like “brain waves to go,” which is really so vague—tells us they've decided it's a good thing (whether itis or not) and they’ll say complimentary things about it, naturally.
Thing just keep happening to me as I continue my wild and crazy bid to take over the White House. The phone rings in my favorite watering hole. It’s someone named Corky from Cali calling to invite me to be a hemp panelist at the Whole Earth Festival at the University of California at Davis.
There has never been a day in my life that has been as empowering as April 9,1989 when I, along with half a million others, marched in the pro-choice rally on Washington, DC. I don’t think anyone expected such a massive outpouring, since the only side of the abortion war the media had been covering was (and usually still is) stories of clinic blockades and “pro-life” bombings of family planning offices.
Grove Weidenfeld has rereleased Martin A. Lee and Bruce Shlain’s counterculture classic, Acid Dreams. If you didn’t read this compelling social history of LSD the first time around, check it out now.... If you’re planning a trip to NYC in the near future, pick up a copy of New York Notorious (Crown).
THE BLACK CROWES Southern Harmony and Musical Companion (Def American) Southern Harmony and Musical Companion is almost the perfect retro-rock album. The Crowes come out blazing with two R&B-style raveups (“Remedy” and “Sting Me”), settle down for a few songs, then explode again.
Like a Japanese soldier found on a South Pacific island, Sonny Burgess has been playing the purest, most unadulterated rock’n’roll you can hear anywhere at any price. He’s been rocking for 36 years, and shows no sign of slowing down, not in this century.